June 13, 2015 Subject:
My involvement with this film goes back to the summer of 1970 when while in high school (10th grade)I aquired an old 35mm Simplex theater projector that I made a summer long project of refurbishing and set it up in my parents basement where I built a small movie theater. I now needed films to project on the simplex. I found people who were selling old 35mm film prints listed in Box Office and trade magazines and Airborne was one of the first films I aquired for about $15.00 plus $14.00 Greyhound package express charges to get the film delivered to near where I lived. I showed this print for years to family and friends and I really got to like the film. My 35mm print, although used, looked and sounded fantastic and gave me much joy in the operation of my little basement movie theater. Over the years I aquired more films where one of the favorites was Girls,Girls,Girls with Elvis in IB Technicolor which had beautiful unfaded colors when I got it in 1971. My review of Airborne was that it was an enjoyable film and even if it did not really reflect the reality of real life it did depict interesting facets of training at the 82nd Airborne. I just wanted to add (061315) that I noted after just watching this today that some footage is missing where Eddie had just saved Rocky and then there is a jump cut to Eddie and his girlfriend. I cannot recall what it missing even though I watched this film many times in the 1970's. Also I would beg to differ with another reviewer that this is a great film print. It is actually in bad scratched condtion and I think it is a 16mm print which limits the quality of he soundtrack.
August 10, 2009 Subject:
I was excited to finally find this film again. As a child growing up in Aberdeen North Carolina I watched parts of this movie being made in aberdeen. It brought back memories of places there long gone. I watched the part where bobby diamond gets out of the old pick up at the railroad tracks and the part filmed at McCrummens drug store. Only thing about this movie that was wrong was the way they used the southern accent. It was all wrong for this area. Nobody I knew spoke that southern. Anyway still a good film to bring back memories.
November 17, 2008 Subject:
this brings back good and bad memories for me
I am an 82nd Airborne Paratrooper(NOT SOLIDER)
the scenes at FT. Benning Georgia at Jump School was refreshing to see.
We did how ever a "Cherry Blast First Jump with a RED helmet, from a Heu....wy H1 and then a Sh....k Helicopter, then later C130 and C131 plane.
July 13, 2007 Subject:
Everyone was too nice
I remember Navy Boot Camp and it was extremely intense. We had some farmer types that were really out there but no one messed with them. We didn't have time or the energy to do much of anything but what we were told.
We all understood that everything we were being taught was life and death stuff and some of the things we did was quite frightening. Anyone that couldn't take it was gone! No one did much talking and the Company Commanders chewed on us like we were Marines. We were constantly being told that we were F*#%&^g Worms.
In this film the Sargent(s) were nice not one cuss word. Navy Chiefs know every cuss word that exists on planet earth and they use them all. Once the Chiefs were done with us we knew every cuss word that had ever been invented by man and we used them all. We didn't have any dances, didn't have any gals, we worked our asses off. Oh we did see some girls once before we actually got our ship. We used to call them Buffarillas! They were half Buffalo and half Gorilla.
What was fun was watching the tough guys, the High School jocks and others of their ilk totally fall apart at the constant barrage of insults being dished out by the Company Commanders. If you even cracked they would pile on you. Some folks even attempted suicide.
So when I was looking at this film I was thinking it was a recruitment film. I still think this was a recruitment film because as bad as we had it we had it good compared to Seal training. The Seals are nut cases! You have to be out of your mind to train like they do.
This film shows paratrooper training of the 82nd division. These guys are a nasty group and highly trained. Maybe it was easier back in the 50's but I don't think so. Their training is similar to what the Seals go through.
My Dad trained in WWII and he said a number of his group were actually killed during training. My Dad was in the army and he said that they had to advance into an area that was being shelled. People were killed by shell fragments. He told me that as he advanced he could see and hear the shell fragments passing him by at high speed. The dirt on the ground around him would puff and hiss as shell fragments hit the ground.
They also had to crawl under live machine gun fire and one guy panicked and stood up, he was cut in half. My Dad almost got blown up in a live grenade exercise. Someone tossed a grenade that bounced off a tree and landed under his feet. My Dad hit the ground the grenade exploded ripping his back pack off.
These guys in this film had it way too easy!
September 17, 2006 Subject:
last part of movie missing
Was a very good movie only the end of the movie was missing. what a disapointment after watching the movie for over an hour and then letting you hang......NOT TOO COOL !
April 24, 2006 Subject:
WhereÂs Kelly McGillis when you need her?
This so-so drama purports to tell the story of a new paratrooper in the 82nd division of the army. Eddie Slocum is a wet behind the ears kid who has dreams of becoming a paratrooper just like his Uncle Charlie. As is custom with movies like this, he meets up with a motley of crew members all from different backgrounds, like Rocky, the bully of the group, and Mouse, the uh, jive-talkin ÂloverÂ of the group. Anyways, they all get put through exercises, and we get to follow them, and actually this is all very interesting. However some ÂDramaÂ develops when Eddie meets a doe-eyed country girl by the name of Jenny May. And well, the love interest side falls flat, because the actress playing her is sort of a airhead, and since her character really is noone we should care about, we just wait around to get the action pumping again (sort of like Top Gun actually). The ending is sort of lovey dovey too with the new chutists, as well, but all in all, I enjoyed this.
January 15, 2006 Subject:
I miss Fury
Now if we just had a '50's TV archive...
November 15, 2004 Subject:
Numbing Pathos, but Interesting in Parts
There is a delightfully antiquated quality to this film, with its predictable plot and cardboard mono-dimensional characters whose sum development is minimal. The obvious (and stated) intention of the producer was to make a film that pays tribute to airborne soldiers - and this is reflected in the total lack of analysis about the unpleasant aspects of military life, and the rather soft and loveable army officers. Consequently there is a pervasive sense of unreality, indeed almost sureality, coating every element of this film, so that by the conclusion one feels as though they have not seen a window into a possible world, but rather that they have been inducted into an adolescent's day dream.
The film focuses on three characters. The chief protagonist "Eddie" is an idiot country lad whose disgustingly sentimental pathos will quickly become annoying to the viewer. Indeed, more than any other aspect of this production, the nature of the protagonist is most likely to feature in your desire to switch off.
I note that Eddie should be regarded as an antihero. Although the film is centred on his experiences, he lacks any breadth of virtue that would make the viewer consider him a hero in his own right.
The film's chief antagonist is a muscular city chap called "Rocky" who has a regrettable inability to socialise or empathise with his fellow recruits. As antagonists go, he is a rather benign villain who, by the end of the film, the viewer will be championing sympathetically.
Finally, there is the resident clown - a swaggering, gum-chewing scarecrow whom the boys call "Mouse". This quirky moron is not particularly amusing (maybe he was more amusing to the unjaded palates of 1962 than those of 2004), but he does prove himself to be generous and kind by showing pity to the hapless Eddie.
If the viewer is expecting a heavy dose of action in this film he will be disappointed. You will need to wait for at least an hour before the characters actually do anything remarkable, however, in the meantime there are countless pushups, an endless litany of jogs around the barracks, a very sedate dance and repeated digs at Eddie's weakness of character.
To be honest, I felt that many of the recruits had a point when they indicated that Eddie was a mollycoddle whom no one could seriously imagine would be of any significant use in defending his country. The character tires quickly, especially the affected, unconfident and syrupy manner in which he speaks, which is not dissimilar to what one might expect from a primary school nancyboy. In fact, I cringed with mortal embarrassment within the first minute when Eddie arrives at boot camp and is totally unable to absorb why his officers were taken aback by his pathetic and dimwitted commentary that is supposed to indicate his "goodheartedness", but which really shows the producer's contemptuous concept of a country person as being shallow and unintelligent.
Most of the conflicts in the film are all apparently based on the Jane Austen parlour intrigue - conflicts of personality, whispering campaigns, and out-of-place persons trying to carve a recess for themselves. At the eye of the storm is "Rocky" whose henious and horrific behaviour involves snatching Eddie's girl at a dance and constantly using the term "weak" in relation to the same (a very astute judgement). However, everyone feels justifiably sorry for Eddie including the touchy-feely officers, and so they all unite together and weigh into the conflict on behalf of the stupid chap, ganging up on Rocky and sending him to coventry.
In awarding this film two stars, I base my judgement on several things. Firstly, in its favour, the film is in good physical condition. The quality in both video and audio is suburb. On the other hand, the acting, plot and characters are sufficient to burn one's nervous system out from repeated cringing - indeed, I was unable to watch the complete production right through in a single "sitting" and needed to break it up into short stretches - truly the sentimental pathos is awful.
November 13, 2004 Subject:
It's interesting to know that the Army - and Army films - haven't changed in over 40 years. Parts of this one are pretty sappy and delightfully dated, but it's worth a watch.